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[dropcap letter="Y"]ouTube has, over the years, truly immortalized some amazing performances. While some mediocre cover artists hide behind an awesome singer for the chorus and refuse to show themselves on the video, there are other performers who have no such qualms, because they dared to go where many feared to tread, regardless what the ruthless comments on YouTube might have to say about them.
Forget about Johnoy Danao and all those other insanely gifted performers. It doesn’t take much bravery to display your singing prowess when you actually have a lot of it to go around. These next 8 performers dared when everyone around them with a working pair of ears told them they shouldn’t, and for that, we laugh not at them, but with them, as they rack up more fans than 99% of anyone reading this right now could even know what to do with.
Abandon hope, all ye who enter.
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Jhay R Santos, "Grenade"
Rico: Bayanihan at its finest. Two people collaborate, breathing a new kind of life into Bruno Mars' "Grenade." Ms. Cornejo shines thanks to her vibrant personality, beautiful singing voice, and laughter, while Jhay R Santos brings it with his excited commentary, high notes, and impromptu rap.
You even have someone else volunteering to backup dance. This is such a perfect example of how working together can produce such a great result, a lesson that we all should keep in mind as we face down the country's many problems.
Kel: In his other video, Jhay R Santos was practically begging Oprah and Ellen to take notice of his "pure talent." One has to wonder if he had "pure intentions" to go along with it, as he tends to murder any song he manages to get his hands on, but none of us can look away. It helps that in his cover of "Grenade," he had a cousin who was actually talented and a jaw-dropping interpretative dancer in the background to back him up.
Asian Bieber, "Baby"
Kel: More than anything else, I'm thoroughly disappointed that he didn't do Ludacris's rap. I mean, how hard could it have been? He was already doing soooo well…
Rico: The message is clear here: you can achieve anything as long as you concentrate enough. Sometimes we need to devote our entire being into a song, like Justin Bieber's "Baby", closing our eyes in pure bliss as we falsetto our way through. Why bother rapping as well, when you can showcase your awesome beatboxing skills?
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Nick Dreamer, "Boom Boom Pow"
Kel: This. Is. Performance. Art. I am mesmerized, and I can’t help but feel blessed to have witnessed something this otherworldly. It’s like an out-of-body-experience when you watch Nick Dreamer doing his thing: all you could think is it’s so surreal that what you are seeing just absolutely cannot possibly be happening right before your very eyes, yet here we are.
It’s like seeing your mom and dad on the night you were conceived: it’s so wrong, you can’t believe you’re seeing this, and it takes you a horrific nine months to fully comprehend what you just witnessed.
Rico: This really is art. They say there's nothing original under the sun, but when you change something so much that it becomes unrecognizable, you're an innovator! And innovation is what we need to keep the Philippines on the right track, as we tap good ol' Filipino ingenuity to wow the rest of the world with our prowess.
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Daniel Padilla, "Prinsesa"
Kel: Denyel, beket ke peilelim keng meketengen? Gelet ke be? Pere ekey leng, seld eut nemen eng cencert meh se Smert Erenete Celleseyem. Engget leng sele seye. Kese, neseye ne eng lehet.
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Alyssa Alano, "Kiss Me"
Rico: This classic reinterpretation of Sixpence None the Richer's
Only this level of nationalism and Pinoy Pride allowed Ms. Alano to relate a famous basketball player to this touching romantic song.
Kel: Who could ever forget the original cover artist queen on YouTube? Alyssa Alano blazed the trail for everybody else with her immortal rendition of “Keys Me.” One can only hope she has more up her sleeve, after she has made a full recovery from the disturbing accident she got into sometime last year, as opposed to the disturbing accident that was her version of the Sixpence None the Richer classic.
Rico: Meet Genelyn Sandaga, the earnest performer who inspired this very 8List. Her constant shifting shows that there's merit in different perspectives. And as she brings the camera closer at times during her unique interpretation of Taylor Swift's "I Knew You Were Trouble," she tells us that zooming in on a situation can sometimes provide the breakthrough we all need.
Yet these insights pale in comparison to Genelyn's true message: spotting trouble is very easy, even just a few seconds in. You just need awareness, in both the visual and auditory sense.
Kel: This might get me into a whole lot of "chobol," but I love Genelyn. I’m a sucker for the way she puts everything of herself into every song she covers; her calm, soothing, monotone voice; even the way she does her sometimes freaky facial expressions. Without a hint of sarcasm, I think she’s pretty awesome, actually. I have a feeling though that if she chose something like, say, a Jose Mari Chan song, given her vocal range, she’d end up being a superstar.
Her vibrato at the very end of the song sends chills down my spine, by the way.
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Genelyn Sandaga, "I Knew You Were Trouble"
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Jerome Smyle, "Let Me Love You"
Rico: They say that the beauty of the Philippines is under-appreciated. Yet this cover shows that there is beauty even in our urban locales. We've got wide boulevards with well-manicured greenery, and hillside roads that blend well with the best that nature has to offer.
Even the plain walls used as a backdrop in this cover shows a certain rustic charm. Jerome is right as he sings Ne-Yo's "Let Me Love You" in these places. It's a daring artistic move that represents all of us speaking earnestly to the Motherland. Let us Love You, Inang Bayan, Let us Love You o Philippines!
Kel: Ermm… nice car, dude? My mom always told me that if I have nothing good to say, I shouldn’t say anything at all. That’s four minutes and twelve seconds of my life I wish I could have gotten back, though.
Fine. I'm willing to buy this guy a ladder. Make that two ladders. So he can reach the high notes.
Rico: Bravo Anne Curtis! Bravo for lending your name and celebrity profile to a worthy cause that will help with national development. Thank you for helping the Bureau of Internal Revenue entertain its large taxpayer base, with your own special brand of entertainment.
At 0:40 you get everyone in the mood: "I hope you're ready!" Yes, we're all ready Anne Curtis. We're all ready to contribute our fair share, and pay all the taxes we owe to fund the treasury and provide financial backing for the Daang Matuwid.
Kel: I had friends abroad asking me if Anne Curtis was any good at singing. I always told them that Anne Curtis is very, very, very hot. Whenever people tell me that making a joke about 9/11 is “too soon,” I remind them that Anne Curtis having a concert after two voice lessons is the epitome of “too soon.”
Despite that, can anyone genuinely hate her for wanting to do this? It’s not like she ever thought for one minute that she’s God’s gift to music. Hats off to her, I watch practically all her movies in the cinemas, but no, I’m not paying a single red cent to hear her sing.
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Anne Curtis, "Alone"
What do you think of these cover artists? Share in the Comments Section.